OPINION

Spread Christmas cheer – it’s a great time to donate or volunteer

Posted On 20 Dec 2019 at 12:10 am

As we head into the last weekend before Christmas, if you are anything like me, life becomes a whirlwind, rushing about trying to get everything done in time.

Every year something disappears or falls off the list. Last year, I couldn’t find the wrapping paper. It came to light in January, stashed on top of the bookshelves. I can only think it was something I did in a hurry to tidy the flat before visitors arrived.

This year it is Christmas cards. As each card from a friend or relative drops happily on to my doormat bringing a message of festive cheer, I feel guilty that I haven’t got around to sending any out.

I have bought some lovely ones from the Madeira Terraces raffle group and I think I might just get them sent by the time you read this as the last posting date is Friday 20 December.

Christmas is also a great time to donate either some money or your time for a good local cause.

This year, I have contributed to the Real Junk Food Project who are crowdfunding for a permanent shop in Gardner Street.

You may have read my “Feed Bellies, Not Bins” article that explained how they make hot, fresh meals from food that would otherwise have been thrown away.

People pay what they can afford. At the time of writing, just another £1,300 was needed to turn this idea into a remarkable reality.

If you want to help people who are homeless, then consider donating to Make Change Count, a joint fundraiser set up by all the major charities helping local people living on the streets of our city.

Volunteering time is equally valuable and there are some wonderful projects who would welcome your help.

The newly launched Bedford Square Garden Project wants to turn the area into a safe and friendly green space that everyone can enjoy. You can get in touch with them at regencyfobs@gmail.com.

Another one of my favourites is the wonderful Brighton and Hove Community Kitchen. I volunteered on their “Cooking on a Budget” and family courses. It is great fun and brilliant way to meet new people and make friends.

All of these projects and more help enrich our communities, so do get involved and give one a go.

Councillor Nancy Platts is the Labour leader of Brighton and Hove City Council.

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